Europe Angered By News Of NSA Spying On EU Offices

Europe Angered By News Of NSA Spying On EU OfficesEuropean officials reacted with fury Sunday to a report that the U.S. National Security Agency spied on EU offices. The European Union warned that if the report is accurate, it will have tremendous repercussions.

‘Electronic eavesdropping operation’

The outrage from European officials over the weekend was the latest fallout since Edward Snowden, a former National Security Agency computer contractor, started spilling details of U.S. surveillance programs to reporters earlier this month.

Citing information from secret documents obtained by Snowden, the German news magazine Der Spiegel reported Sunday that several U.S. spying operations targeted European Union leaders. Der Spiegel said it had “in part seen” documents from Snowden that describe how the National Security Agency bugged EU officials’ Washington and New York offices and conducted an “electronic eavesdropping operation” that tapped into a EU building in Brussels, Belgium.


‘Seeking asylum’

The Guardian newspaper reported that one NSA document leaked by Snowden describes 38 embassies and missions as “targets” and details surveillance methods that include planting bugs in communications equipment and collecting transmissions with specialized antennae. Targets included France, Italy, Greece, Japan, Mexico, South Korea, India and Turkey, according to The Guardian.

Snowden has revealed himself as the source of documents outlining a massive effort by the NSA to track cell phone calls and monitor the e-mail and Internet traffic of virtually all Americans. Critics slam him as a traitor. Supporters hail him as a hero. Now Snowden, who faces espionage charges in the United States, is in Russia and seeking asylum from Ecuador.

Do you believe the NSA was really spying on EU offices? What impact could this report have on the relations between the U.S. and Europe?

Source: Josh Levs and Catherine E. Shoichet | CNN

Image: International Business Times

Turkish Protesters: Security Forces Used Excessive Force

Turkish Protesters Security Forces Used Excessive ForceProtesters seething over their treatment by security forces hurled rocks at riot police in Ankara’s Kizilay Square on Monday, the latest in a string of violent clashes that have punctuated massive anti-government demonstrations spreading across Turkey — leaving thousands injured and at least one dead in the past two days alone.

‘Bloodied protesters’

The protests united demonstrators from across the political spectrum against a common foe: security forces who unleashed tear gas and water cannons on them in response to what had been largely peaceful protests against the government of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

International groups including Amnesty International have criticized the police response as excessive. In Ankara Sunday night, a CNN crew witnessed authorities roughing up at least one protester. One police officer kicked a CNN videographer, CNN’s Nick Paton Walsh reported, and a CNN crew in Istanbul Sunday also witnessed bloodied protesters.


‘Paternalistic and authoritarian’

The protests began after plans were made to raze Gezi Park, the last green space in central Istanbul, and replace it with a replica of 19th-century Ottoman barracks. The development would contain a shopping mall. What began as a sit-in by a handful of angry residents quickly grew into a larger protest. Riot police moved in, using tear gas and pepper spray. Protesters responded by hurling bottles, setting up barricades, blocking bulldozers and burning trash in the middle of the street.

Then, outraged by the behavior of security forces, demonstrators began attacking police. The protests have since morphed into larger complaints against Erdogan, whom protesters call paternalistic and authoritarian.

Did the police use excessive force against the people during this supposedly peaceful protest? Who is to blame for this “unprecedented violence”?

Source: Ivan Watson and Gul Tuysuz, CNN

Image: Euronews